Visa Types for Permanent Immigrants
In general, any applicant for an immigrant visa must be the beneficiary of an approved petition. Certain applicants such as priority workers, investors, certain special immigrants, and diversity immigrants can petition on their own behalf. All other intending immigrants must have a relative or potential employer petition for them in the United States.
Once the National Visa Center has completed its processing of applicants’ petition and forwarded it to the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa, applicants are expected to read and follow all Interview Preparation Instructions located on the Department of State’s web site at:
Additionally, the Diversity Visa Program provides a certain number of permanent resident visas annually. These visas are drawn from countries with low rates of immigration to the U.S.
Immigrant visas are processed on an appointment basis. At the time of the interview, the applicant should be present in front of a consular officer. A child must be accompanied by a legal representative or a legal guardian, but no other assistants are permitted in the Embassy at the time of interview. After the visa is approved, the applicant will be given instruction to collect the visa the next day. Post also processes third-country nationals if they have legal status in Ethiopia.
Medical examinations are required for all immigrant visa applicants. Individuals must go to one of our approved panel physicians.
“Effective August 15, 2011, petitioners residing overseas will no longer be able to routinely file Immigrant Visa petitions (Forms I-130, Petitions for Alien Relative) with US Embassy Addis Ababa, except in exceptional circumstances. All Forms I-130 must now be filed with the USCIS Chicago Lock Box. USCIS Chicago Lockbox addresses for regular mail deliveries:
P.O. Box 804625
Chicago, IL 60680-4107
USCIS Chicago Lockbox address for express mail and courier deliveries:
131 South Dearborn-3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60603-5517
For additional information about how to file a Form I-
130 with the USCIS Chicago lockbox, please see the USCIS
website at www.uscis.gov or contact USCIS by phone at 1-
For more information on the new regulations, please click here. Please visit the American Citizen Service window for more details.”
After the Interview
If the visa application is approved, you must arrange for delivery of your passport with the visa, as well as your Immigrant Visa document packet, directly with the Bank of Abyssinia agent located at the Embassy entrance. Bank of Abyssinia will deliver the passport, visa, and immigrant visa packet to any branch of Bank of Abyssinia in Addis Ababa. Bank of Abyssinia collects a service fee of 50 Ethiopian birr per passport for this service. You may then pick up your passport and visa from your selected Bank of Abyssinia branch at your convenience.
Effective February 1, 2013, all individuals issued immigrant visas overseas must pay a $165.00 USCIS Immigrant Fee before traveling to the United States. Only prospective adoptive parents whose child(ren) is/are entering the United States under either the Orphan or Hague Process, Iraqi and Afghan special immigrants who were employed by the U.S. government, returning residents, and those issued K visas are exempt from the new fee. The below USCIS website has more details on the new fee, including contact information for USCIS, if there are further questions:
Please see the Department of State’s visa fees page.
For specific inquiries regarding adoption please e-mail:
For American Citizen Services, please e-mail:
To report fraud, please e-mail:
To request an expedited appointment, please e-mail:
All other inquiries should be sent to:
If you are calling about an emergency involving a U.S. citizen please call:
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